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It's about courtesy, guys!

by merlyn (Sage)
on Nov 14, 2000 at 18:42 UTC ( #41572=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to RE: (brainpan) RE: RE: RE: RE: Who owns your words? A resolution is needed.
in thread Who owns your words? A resolution is needed.

They added to the body of knowledge and didn't bitch when someone else quoted them. And they definately did get quoted.
But I bet they didn't have a transcript of what they said at Joe's Bar and Grill published in the paper.

There are certain expectations of privacy established through custom. I'm not talking about the "right to republish" here. Copyright law covers that.

I'm talking about courtesy and decency. While a newspaper reporter probably has a right to republish something he overheard in a pub, chances are that his editor would require a fact-finding mission first to verify the truth of what was said before publishing it, especially if it was embarassing or damaging.

We have certain privacy expecations in society. Yes, legally, there appears to be no difference between the CB and a node. I'm not interested in arguing this along that axis. I'm just talking about expectations.

I expect that my CB chat will be transitory, viewed by the audience that I expect is there (as seen by a glance to "other users") and then disappear into the ether. So I treat it like I would a pub-style conversation, where I get loose sometimes and don't always think about my facts or opinions... I'm just chatting, I can fix it back up in a minute or two if someone disagrees.

On the other hand, I expect that a node is more permanent (like a Usenet message or a column I write), so I think carefully about what I write, make sure it'll make sense in the context presented, and usually reserve opinion and controversy unless I'm responding to something I strongly disagree with. In other words, I write what I expect will be quoted and my name attached to it.

Some people here (perhaps you) are requesting me to change my expectation about the CB (pub to me), to presume that there's not only the temporal attendees, but a microphone connected to a loudspeaker outside the building. I'm sorry, but if that were to happen to me explicitly in a pub, I'd probably stop talking. And if it happened to me implicitly in a pub, I'd raise bloody hell as I did here, because it violates what I consider to be the scope of my audience.

So that's why I feel violated when the transcript was quoted. I thought I was talking in a pub, and someone published a pub chat in a newspaper. Further, I thought we had already agreed not to do that, but as I've seen now, that's not the case.

I'm glad we're getting a chance to discuss it now. What I'd like to see is a resolution (soon) that codifies the expectation. Either:

  1. We agree that CB is transitory (like a pub), and agree not to publicly log it (or get permission before reposting a log), or
  2. We agree that there is no difference between a node and the CB, and that conventional quoting rules apply, or
  3. We agree to something else.
My mistake for presuming #1 was already in place.

So can we get this resolved soon? Leaving it ambiguous as it appears to be now really doesn't work for me.

-- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker


Comment on It's about courtesy, guys!
(brainpan) RE: It's about courtesy, guys!
by brainpan (Monk) on Nov 14, 2000 at 19:32 UTC
    Well said merlyn. I'll ++ this node as soon as I'm allocated my next round of votes. A few thoughts, in no particular order: perhaps there had been a general understanding that the chatterbox is everything you say it is in option #1. Just as your extensive knowledge of perl is not necessarily known by us peons, so it is with your knowledge of monastery politics. You've been around here considerably longer than many (most?) of us, and some people don't pick up on unspoken rules no matter how much exposure they have to them.

    You mention that the Chatterbox is like a pub. Conversations there are off the cuff, relaxed, unguarded, transitory, and somewhat private. I'll grant you all but the last one, as I discussed over here. Like it or not, people browsing this site as Anonymous Monk can read what is going on in the chatterbox. Or to borrow your analogy (without asking permission no less :)) this is like someone put "a microphone connected to a loudspeaker outside the building." Pardon my saying so, but if you s/loudspeaker/scrolling hypertext/; and s/building/manastery walls/; this describes the present system exactly, and you knew this, if only for reading this thread. I propose a modification to this is my aforementioned post, but right now we're still in the raising bloody he|| phase of the operation.

    Please understand, I mean no disrespect to merlyn or anyone else in posting this, and as a participant/ maker of noise in the thread that sparked this discussion, I both understand and sympathize with your indignation over having an informal conversation introduced into the permanent public record. Unlike you, I was logged in when it was mentioned that the conversation was going to be posted to a node. I remained silent, implicitly giving my permission, (whatever that was worth) and I assumed that the poster would go through the unspoken formalities before publishing said content. Evidently that did not take place, and a much needed discussion was started. Started, I might point out, by a trivial intra-monastery misunderstanding, not by Anonymous Monk's "Unguarded Wisdom of the Wizard" book appearing on the NY Times bestsellers list. From the alge filled end of the pool it looks like this has been a good thing for the monastery.

    And no, I don't own 27 pairs of sweatpants.
RE: It's about courtesy, guys!
by jepri (Parson) on Nov 14, 2000 at 20:36 UTC
    Some people here (perhaps you) are requesting me to change my expectation about the CB (pub to me), to presume that there's not only the temporal attendees, but a microphone connected to a loudspeaker outside the building. I'm sorry, but if that were to happen to me explicitly in a pub, I'd probably stop talking. And if it happened to me implicitly in a pub, I'd raise bloody hell as I did here, because it violates what I consider to be the scope of my audience.

    I always viewed the chatbox as more like a street corner, but I do appreciate your point. You thought you were surrounded by friends and/or companions and someone did something that you consider quite unfriendly. But how do you scope your audience? You and I haven't even talked to each other up to now, but you had that whole conversation in front of me.

    So that's why I feel violated when the transcript was quoted. I thought I was talking in a pub, and someone published a pub chat in a newspaper. Further, I thought we had already agreed not to do that, but as I've seen now, that's not the case.

    I just had a quick look through the site FAQs - I can't find it anywhere. It's a bit late here so maybe I'm missing it.

    I'm glad we're getting a chance to discuss it now. What I'd like to see is a resolution (soon) that codifies the expectation.

    How should we resolve this? I feel you should have provided some mechanisms for this, rather than just throwing the question out - that makes it seem rhetorical. We could do a quick poll, or a vote or something. But it seems that the way you handled it worked quite well. (I guess)You contacted the person responsible, said something, they changed their mind and all was OK again.

    If you are worried in particular about my hard line post, then I assure you that I won't print a transcript of any conversation you engage in here, without your explicit permission. Believe it or not, I agree with you. It wasn't the politest thing for someone to do. I'm just strongly against rules. Courtesy, sure. Enforced, I'd rather not.

    I'm sorry if this is a little incoherent, it's late but I think you wanted a response sooner rather than later.

    ____________________
    Jeremy

      How should we resolve this? I feel you should have provided some mechanisms for this, rather than just throwing the question out - that makes it seem rhetorical. We could do a quick poll, or a vote or something. But it seems that the way you handled it worked quite well. (I guess)You contacted the person responsible, said something, they changed their mind and all was OK again.
      Well, I didn't provide a mechanism because I didn't have that part of it figured out yet. Could be an edict from vroom, for all I care, or some sort of democratic process that doesn't require a recount. {grin}

      And I'll disagree with you on the way I handled it turning out well. I invoked percieved authority, and cited non-existing standards. Now that my bluff was called (grin), I'd never be able to get that kind of response again. So the next time around that something appears, we are now more ambiguous, rather than less. Unfortunately, I've now set exactly the opposite precedent I wanted.

      So we still have the problem on the table. Let's discuss it until it's resolved, because until it's resolved, I must be a lot more guarded in the chatterbox, and I don't like that (although I'll adapt to that if it turns out to be the case).

      -- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker

Re: It's about courtesy, guys!
by epoptai (Curate) on Feb 09, 2001 at 09:18 UTC
    Responding to merlyn's expectations of the status of CB content, "I expect that my CB chat will be transitory, viewed by the audience that I expect is there (as seen by a glance to "other users") and then disappear into the ether."

    If you happen to be chatterboxing when google spiders perlmonks your words will be immortalized in google's cache.

    Update: Updated the cache link since pages in google's cache eventually expire, point still being that CB comments may persist outside of perlmonks and be accessible to the wide world for some time.

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